Looking for rare vinyl? Johnny’s Records in Darien to join Record Store Drop Day
Johnny’s Records, a beloved longtime record store in Darien, is participating in Record Store Drop Day, an event when vinyl fans and collectors can get one-of-a-kind titles.
This is a redesigned format for Record Store Day, a twice-a-year event that celebrates Independent Record Stores. Originally, it was postponed from April to June due to COVID-19.
“Like our customers, we will miss the joy and camaraderie of a bustling Record Store Day. But for the time being, we want to emphasis safety and consideration of our shoppers’ health,” said John Konrad of Johnny’s Records.
As virus cases increased, the event was changed to Record Store Drop Day and spread across three days to discourage crowds. This year’s dates are Saturday, Aug. 29; Saturday, Sept. 26; and Saturday Oct. 24.
Founded in 2008, it is usually held the third Saturday in April and the day after Thanksgiving. For these days, several hundred special records are issued and distributed through Indie record stores. The titles are not available on Amazon or in large box stores.
Each release has a unique quality that makes it desirable to record collectors. Sometimes there is music by a favorite band that has never been issued previously. Other times, a particular record has been out of print for decades. A release may be on colored vinyl. Usually, the issues are quite limited. Sometimes there may be only a few thousand copies of a title available.
The popular events offer the combined fun qualities of a festival and a fire sale. They are celebrated by large crowds that continue throughout the day.
The title change of the event to is to indicate that crowds and close contact will not be an allowed. Each store is left to solve the problem of how to achieve this.
At Johnny’s, instead of forming a line outside the door, shoppers should wait in their cars. On a sheet at the door, each customer should sign up with their name and car model/license plate and return to their vehicle to wait. Customers should not gather outside the door.
Beginning at 8 a.m. Aug. 29, Johnny’s staff will go from car to car obtaining a printed list of items that each shopper wants.
Customers will be served in order from the sign-up sheet. The available titles are listed to peruse on the Record Store Day website and their “drop” date is listed as one of the days above. Customers should request only August-dated albums.
Johnny’s also will post a list of the records they have available on its Facebook page. Shoppers should wear masks to interact with employees.
At 9 a.m., shoppers will be presented with an invoice and be asked for payment by cash or credit card. No records can be sold before 9 a.m.
At approximately 10 a.m., three customers at a time will be allowed in the store to shop for 15 minutes. The store has a good amount of inventory, but the 15-minute will be strictly enforced. Johnny’s invites customers to come back at a later date to browse. Those who wish to provide a list after the sign-up time can hand employees their list at the door and wait in their cars.
Johnny’s Records is a classic rock memorabilia store that opened its doors in 1975. Johnny’s carries pins, jewelry, rock band T-shirts and unique accessories, including infants’ rock and roll onsies; rare rock and roll posters and prints; and cassette tapes, CDs and LPs, which are both new and used.
Johnny’s Records is at 45 Tokeneke Road. For more information visit www.facebook.com/johnnysrecordshop/.